Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

So, it seems (dark) chocolate IS good for you

I’ve mentioned a few special ‘Days of the year’, and quite a number of them celebrate chocolate.

Now, it seems that not only does chocolate make you feel better, it seems that dark chocolate is actually good for you (provided you don’t overdo it).

No longer will reaching for a piece of chocolate at the end of a long day be filled with shame – turns out, it’s good for you.

A review from Italian University of L’Aquila has revealed that a small piece of dark chocolate each day can actually improve your day to day cognitive ability.

What does it help?

Valentina Socci and Michele Ferrara, authors of the review, say that dark chocolate actually improved attention, processing speed, working memory and verbal fluency.

The Italian researchers reviewed the effects of dark chocolate on elderly people who eat it on a regular basis.

The review found that, over the course of three months, the chocolate helped slow down a decline in memory.

How does it help?

The ‘magic’ of chocolate all comes down to the presence of something called cocoa flavanols.

They are a type of compound found in dark chocolate and also in fruits including apples, grapes and pears.

“If you look at the underlying mechanism, the cocoa flavanols have beneficial effects for cardiovascular health,” said the researchers.

The chemical compounds are reported to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

Chocolate is good for your brain – according to scientists

Sounds good to me.

And, I’ve discovered Poundland has these on offer, including a pure Dark Chocolate option 🙂

However, they ALL pretty good, and a brilliant play on a certain ‘other’ triangular chocolate offering (which was in the news recently, for creative thinking involving a quiet little price increase, which the media made a meal of), which costs a lot more just for its brand name or label – and you know I think anyone who pays for a brand name or label is just a mug.

As you can see, I keep a stock of these on hand, just in case of emergencies!

Poundland Twin Peaks Chocolate

Poundland Twin Peaks Chocolate

This article also deserves a Gold Star for the writer

I’d also like to draw attention to these lines from the article:

People should stick to a small amount of dark chocolate, but it can be enjoyed every day.

As the report says, “Dark chocolate is a rich source of flavanols. So we always eat some dark chocolate. Every day.”

I can’t remember when I last came across correct use of the words ‘every day’.

Lazy and sloppy writers, and lazy and sloppy editors and reviewers now happily just join the separate words ‘every’ and ‘day’ to form the word ‘everyday’, as if it means the same as ‘every day’.


‘Everyday’ means ordinary or commonplace.

Specifically: The adjective everyday, meaning ‘happening or used every day’ or ‘commonplace’ (everyday chores), is written as one word, whereas the adverb meaning ‘each day, daily’ (I get up at six every day) is written as two.

It’s not hard.

But almost everybody writing in the media gets it wrong nowadays, and just runs the two words together almost every time.

The same is also now true of most signs in shops as well. Look for proclamations such as ‘Great Bargains Everdyay’.

Just try replacing ‘everyday’ with ‘ordinary’, or ‘commonplace’, and you’ll see how stupid what they have written is.

And, don’t forget, they got PAID for writing that rubbish!

01/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Ghost signs – Helensburgh

I’m not sure if there are any left to be found along the shops on the front of Helensburgh, it’s been ‘modernised’ a number of times so the shop signs have been renewed a number of times.

There may be ghost signs behind, but you would have to be there at the right time – to catch a view when a later sign is removed.

However, while I was standing in front of the train station, I noticed a couple across from the entrance.

While one retains a degree of readability, the other was a little too far gone.

Helensburgh Ghost Sign 2

Helensburgh Ghost Sign


Helensburgh Ghost Sign 1

Helensburgh Ghost Sign

This was just a chance sighting, there may be more (I might take a look on another day), but I didn’t have time to stop and look – the last (direct) bus leaves rather early!

01/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , | Leave a comment

Nextbike stations slowly creep into the east end

As someone who walks from the east end into Glasgow city centre, and wanders around the west end, until recently I always thought Nextbike failed miserably.

Once in the city, or in the west end, I could (if I wanted to) have got onto a Nextbike offering.

But, had I wanted to use that facility to get from home, or even anywhere near home by Nextbike, I’d have walked so far to reach the nearest station it wouldn’t have been worth it.

While it still wasn’t much use to me, still too far away from home, I was pleased to see the system eventually made it as far as Dennistoun, and the end of (populated) Duke Street (at the corner of the former meat market.

It even made an appearance of sorts at the other end of (populated) Duke Street (along from Bellgrove), although that is just a Nextbike dumped on the new bike racks there, rather than an actual Nextbike station.

Duke Street Bike Racks

Duke Street Bike Racks

However, the latest news brings things a little closer, with a new Nextbike station planned for The Forge – so that’s only an hour I’d have to walk for before I could jump on a Nextbike. Or get the bus. And can wait until September.

New Nextbike stations for 2019 are:

Possil Health Centre (Saracen Street)

Maryhill Tesco (Maryhill Road)

Queen Margaret Drive/Maryhill Road

Hyndland Railway Station

Maxwell Park Railway Station

Glasgow Forge (Gallowgate)

Expected installation of the new sites is September.

This came with news of their e-bike arrival.

But that’s not coming as close as their ordinary bikes, so won’t even be as close as them for another year or two.

A fleet of 63 e-bikes will be stationed at the following 21 locations:

Cessnock Subway Station

Queen’s Park Railway Station

Langside Halls



Woodside (North)

Possil Health Centre

Firhill Road

Botanic Gardens

University of Glasgow (East)

Maryhill Tesco

Hyndland Railway Station

Bellgrove Railway Station (North)

Dalmarnock Railway Station

Alexandra Parade West

George Square

St Enoch Square

Merchant Square, pictured

Glasgow Green (Saltmarket/Clyde Place)

Sauchiehall Street


LOCATIONS Revealed For Glasgow’s E-Bike Fleet Plus New Cycle Hire Stations

So, any Nextbike seen around my area is STILL going to be an abandoned one, not at an actual station.

I can’t help but feel that the upmarket west end is getting preferential treatment, while the peasants of the east end, who presumably need bikes as they live in poverty and can’t afford cars, are left wanting.

I see a lot of tourists seem to like jumping on these hire bikes, something else there wouldn’t be much of in the east end (to generate revenue).

01/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

STV News is not asleep – it’s downright catatonic!

I am sometimes shocked at what some paid/pro writers get away with. Sometimes utter nonsense!

I’ve been passing the St Enoch shopping centre for more than month, on an almost daily basis.

Prior to that, I even wandered in a few times, but frankly, there’s barely a shop in there worth the effort of pushing the door open to get to!

(Bear in mind, this is purely my view on shops that are any use to me – of which the total in St Enoch is near to zero.)

There were a few in the early days, but those ones always seem to disappear from shopping centres after a few years.

It does have this, but the stuff in there is some of the most expensive, especially for tourists 😉

Glasgow Museums Store St Enoch

Glasgow Museums Store St Enoch

I mention dropping in recently because when you enter at the end where BHS used to be located you are taken into a sort of makeshift tunnel that separates you from that former occupant’s premises.

And I mention passing in the bus for a month because the outside of the former BHS store is blocked off by fencing, which has messages about the derelict area being turned into a cinema and restaurants.

Which brings me to a shocking surprise announced on the STV News web site.

A new cinema and nine restaurants are being opened at a Glasgow shopping centre.

Work began on Monday transforming the St Enoch Centre, adding the nine-screen Vue cinema and the new eateries.

The £40m development is due to open in summer 2020, and will also include new shops and other leisure attractions.

New cinema and restaurants at St Enoch shopping centre

If STV News is right, and work on the cinema and restaurants just started on Monday…

What has been going on there for at least the past couple of months?

I don’t have one to hand, but I will get a sample pic soon, and place it here to complete this note.

01/05/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , | Leave a comment


%d bloggers like this: